Seattle writer raising funds for cancer research trains for Everest climb in unique way

A local man training to climb Mount Everest has a workout that's a little more than your typical stairmaster routine. He does it with 80 pounds of granite in his backpack!

Bio-tech journalist Luke Timmerman is in training and has more than $325,000 in pledges to climb the tallest mountain in the world.

It's part of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center2018 Climb to Fight Cancer Expedition. while others have climbed local mountains for the fundraiser... He'll be the first to attempt everest.

"They're trying to cure cancer! That's a Mount Everett-type goal if you are a scientist," said Timmerman. "And so I think people just immediately get that, and they relate to it. And they want to be a part of it."

When Luke first decided to Mount Everest he set a goal of raising $175,000. But he soon reached $325,000 -- and is now going for $375,000! He says the support and inspiration he's gotten is "beyond his wildest dreams."

Luke leaves on March 27 for Kathmandu and begins his expedition on April 1. You can get involved too -- either by donating or by climbing a local peak yourself -- like Mount Baker, Hood or Shasta. You can find out more at